• London Olympics 2012

Porter shrugs off 'plastic' tag

ESPN staff
May 29, 2012 « Valbuena set to reject Arsenal advances | Chartbeat test »

Tiffany Porter insists she is honoured to be representing Team GB at the London Olympics 2012 despite being labelled a 'plastic Brit' by some sections of the media.

Hurdler Porter, who was born in the United States to a British mother and holds dual nationality for the US and Great Britain, became the focus of a debate into the representative nature of the British athletics squad after being named team captain ahead of the World Indoor Championships by Charles Van Commenee.

The support of Jessica Ennis, whose father is Jamaican, and Mo Farah, whose family arrived in the UK as Somali refugees when he was a child, among others has steeled Porter's commitment to Team GB as she prepares for her first Olympic Games.

"I was very inspired by Mo, Jess, Helen [Clitheroe] and my other team-mates rallying around me," Porter, who also qualified to run for Nigeria through her father, told The Guardian. "They all said, 'Tiffany, don't focus on that stuff.' I was excited by that reaction. It helped me a lot.

"I am very much American. I am very much British. I am very much Nigerian. I am extremely proud to be all three. I'm not apologising for that. It's who I am. I embrace it. It's very important to be true to myself."

Porter, who ran a season's best 12.65sec to beat a world-class 100m hurdles field in Ostrava on Friday, missed out on qualification for the US track and field squad for the Beijing Olympics before electing to join the British team in 2011.

"Once I looked at the whole situation I just knew that GB was the right place for me. The collective support of everyone at Team GB has helped me improve so much. I'm now in the form of my life."

"I was honoured when Charles asked me to become captain. I was thrilled and very excited. I had no hesitation in saying yes."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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